July 25, 2014
The morning session of Day 4 at the 2014 World Junior Championships in Eugene, Ore., was a busy one as it saw the semifinals of the men’s 3,000 steeplechase and women’s 1,500 as well as the first round of the men’s 800. It was a good day for the Americans as both Alexa Efraimson (going to be a HS senior) and Elise Cranny (headed to Stanford) advanced to Sunday’s final in the women’s 1,500 while incoming Arizona freshman Bailey Roth broke a 35-year-old national record in the 3,000 steeplechase held by Eugene native Jeff Hess.
Tre’tez Kinnaird (Indiana) also advanced to Saturday’s semifinals in the men’s 800, while Myles Marshall (men’s 800, HS junior) and Bryce Miller (men’s steeple, UMKC) didn’t have it today and failed to move on. We recap the action with results below.
Women’s 1,500 semis
Top four in each heat advanced to final plus next four fastest times.
A first 400 of 69.60 did little to break up the field, with Efraimson and Ethiopia’s 4:02 woman Gudaf Tsegay behind leader Ekaterina Sokolova of Russia. Those three still led with two to go, with Kenya’s Sheila Keter and Great Britain’s Bobby Lake (4th at World Youths last year) behind them.
After a 67.46 third lap, the Tsegay, Keter, Efraimson and Lake broke from the pack and as they rounded the Bowerman Curve, the four auto spots were all but decided. Tsegay and Keter would separate slightly from Efraimson and Lake, but all four made it comfortably through. Sokolova would hang on for fifth, but the modest early pace (2:20 at 800) meant that she would not get one of the four time qualifiers, all of which would come from Heat 2.
|1||581||Gudaf TSEGAY||ETH||4:15.62 Q|
|2||987||Sheila Chepngetich KETER||KEN||4:16.13 Q|
|3||667||Bobby CLAY||GBR||4:16.56 Q||SB|
|4||1594||Alexa EFRAIMSON||USA||4:16.87 Q|
|10||1488||Emine Hatun TUNA||TUR||4:26.28|
|13||630||Johanna GEYER CARLES||FRA||4:33.84|
The favorite, Ethiopia’s Dawit Seyaum, who has run 3:59 this year and beat Jenny Simpson in New York on June 14, took the lead in this one and led through a quick 65.01 opening lap. Elise Cranny of the U.S. was close to the front but on the rail, with several bodies in front of her.
The pace slowed to 71.57 for the second lap and with 500 to go, there were still nine women in it. Seyaum began to move at the bell and would look very relaxed in pulling away to victory over the final lap, repeatedly glancing over her shoulder to observe her lead. Behind her, it was a four-woman fight for the other three auto spots as Cranny battled with Great Britain’s Amy Griffiths, Poland’s Sofia Ennaoui and Kenya’s Winfred Mbithe.
Griffiths lost some ground on the other three in the home stretch to finish fifth but it wouldn’t matter as she would also advance as a time qualifier. The faster early pace (2:16 at 800 rather than 2:20) meant that all four time qualifiers came from this race.
|1||578||Dawit SEYAUM||ETH||4:14.72 Q|
|2||1195||Sofia ENNAOUI||POL||4:15.07 Q|
|3||989||Winfred MBITHE||KEN||4:15.12 Q||PB|
|4||1590||Elise CRANNY||USA||4:15.21 Q|
|5||678||Amy GRIFFITHS||GBR||4:16.22 q|
|6||615||Cassandre BEAUGRAND||FRA||4:18.56 q|
|7||332||Katelyn AYERS||CAN||4:18.87 q||PB|
|8||181||Anna LAMAN||AUS||4:18.89 q|
|11||1248||Maria Claudia FLOREA||ROU||4:25.12||PB|
|12||1144||Elisabeth Angell BERGH||NOR||4:26.14|
|14||811||Siofra CLEIRIGH BUTTNER||IRL||4:33.49|
Quick Take #1: Seyaum made this look easy.
We know that the heavy favorite doesn’t always deliver (Cuba’s Sahily Diago was way faster than everyone else coming into the 800 but had to settle for silver), but Seyaum entered as the class of this field and ran like a star today. The entire field was keying off her and Seyaum never looked to be in any trouble. She opened up a gap easily on the final lap and seemed to have plenty left in the tank as everyone else dug in to qualify. She has the fastest PR and looked the best in the prelims so we’ll be very surprised if she doesn’t win in the final (Sunday, 6:55 p.m. ET).
Quick Take #2: Efraimson and Cranny both looked fine and should have a shot at a medal in Sunday’s final.
Efraimson has the faster PR (#3 in the field at 4:07.05) but it’s hard to gain much insight from her prelim. There were four women that all broke away, and though Efraimson didn’t finish at the front of that group, she didn’t have to as she was still guaranteed a spot in the final. Cranny had to battle a bit more as she was in a group of four for three auto spots, but in the end she got the last auto and was over a second in front of the next finisher. Neither made it look easy like Seyaum, but it also didn’t look like either of them were going all out to make the final.
As it stands, the Americans have a decent shot at a medal, with Efraimson more likely to medal than Cranny considering she’s run faster and beat her at U.S. Juniors.
Discuss this race in our fan forum: Alexa and Elise both Qualified for 1500 Final.
Men’s 800 prelims
Top three in each heat advance to semis plus next six fastest times
Australia’s Luke Mathews used a big negative split (57-53) to lead the qualifiers as the University of Florida’s Andres Arroyo, an NCAA qualifier outdoors, missed out.
|1||152||Luke MATHEWS||AUS||1:50.76 Q|
|2||1385||Kalle BERGLUND||SWE||1:50.99 Q|
|3||562||Mamush LENCHA||ETH||1:51.23 Q|
|6||393||Rosel LUSANGA KAFWA||COD||1:54.81|
|7||1238||Mohamed El Nour MOHAMED||QAT||1:55.17|
|1067||Omar ROSALES||MEX||DQ R163.3(a)|
Sweden’s Andreas Almgren (1:46.99 PR) looked very good in this one as the U.S.’s Myles Marshall (son of 1984 U.S. 800 Olympian John Marshall) faded from third at the bell to last.
|1||1383||Andreas ALMGREN||SWE||1:50.27 Q|
|2||807||Karl GRIFFIN||IRL||1:50.69 Q|
|3||532||Axel VIVES||ESP||1:50.77 Q|
|7||472||Kristian Uldbjerg HANSEN||DEN||1:52.35|
Unusually for him, Kenya’s World Youth champ/1:44 man Alfred Kipketer ran even splits in this one (54.79-55.01) and looked great to win. American Tre’tez Kinnaird was right with Kipketer until he was passed in the final meters by the Netherlands’ Tony Van Diepen but held on for the final auto spot.
|1||972||Alfred KIPKETER||KEN||1:49.80 Q|
|2||1096||Tony VAN DIEPEN||NED||1:50.04 Q|
|3||1543||Tre’tez KINNAIRD||USA||1:50.07 Q|
|4||609||Nasredine KHATIR||FRA||1:50.18 q|
|7||506||Abraham TSEGAY TESFAMARIAM||ERI||1:52.16|
Ethiopia’s Jena Umar held off a late charge by Great Britain’s Kyle Langford as those two comfortably qualified at the front of Heat 4.
|1||565||Jena UMAR||ETH||1:49.44 Q|
|2||661||Kyle LANGFORD||GBR||1:49.73 Q|
|3||856||Enrico RICCOBON||ITA||1:49.96 Q|
|4||1300||Konstantin TOLOKONNIKOV||RUS||1:50.19 q|
|7||1057||Jesús Tonatiu LÓPEZ||MEX||1:52.59|
The fastest heat of the day was won by Kenya’s 1:45 man Joshua Masikonde as six of the eight runners in this heat advanced to the semis. Brazil’s Thiago Andre, fourth in last night’s 1,500 final, was second with a gap back to Austria’s Dominik Stadlmann in third.
|1||979||Joshua Tiampati MASIKONDE||KEN||1:47.84 Q|
|2||277||Thiago ANDRÈ||BRA||1:48.05 Q|
|3||192||Dominik STADLMANN||AUT||1:49.07 Q||PB|
|4||246||Aurele VANDEPUTTE||BEL||1:49.40 q|
|5||259||Yan SLOMA||BLR||1:49.48 q||PB|
|6||1333||Lucijan ZALOKAR||SLO||1:49.84 q|
Austria’s Nikolaus Franzmair, who was fifth at European Juniors last year, bided his time in this one but in the end there was no question who was best as he powered away in the final straight. Ireland’s Robert Tully went out in 52.07 for the first lap, over a second faster than any other heat, and it cost him as he ran a painful 60-second final lap and faded to last.
|1||190||Nikolaus FRANZMAIR||AUT||1:49.30 Q|
|2||641||Theo BLUNDELL||GBR||1:49.89 Q|
|3||1225||Andres GONZALEZ||PUR||1:50.10 Q||PB|
|4||104||Takieddine HEDEILLI||ALG||1:50.15 q|
|6||1235||Abubaker Haydar ABDALLA||QAT||1:50.79|
The men’s 800 continues with the semifinals tomorrow at 7:25 p.m. ET.
Men’s 3,000 steeple semis
Top five in each heat advance to final plus next five fastest times
Kenya’s Barnabas Kipyego crushed this one and ran 8:31 when he could have run 10 seconds slower and still qualified easily. But Kipyego’s front-running dragged the field along to some very fast times, with over half the field setting PRs. That included Roth, who set a U.S. high school record even though he was just seventh in the race (old record: 8:50.1).
The 3,000 steeplechase is rarely run at the high school level, but 8:48 is a very solid time for an 18-year-old. Roth already had the HS 2,000 steeple record and is well-positioned for a nice future in the event as it usually takes college steeplers a year or two to really figure out the event. He’ll have to improve a lot if he wants the U.S. junior record though, as former Georgetown runner (and former Brown coach) John Gregorek holds that at 8:33.8.
Discuss this feat in our fan forum: *MB: Bailey Roth breaks 35 year old steeple HSR!
|1||976||Barnabas KIPYEGO||KEN||8:31.72 Q|
|2||560||Meresa KAHSAY||ETH||8:38.01 Q|
|3||302||Evans Rutto CHEMATOT||BRN||8:40.37 Q||PB|
|4||834||Yohanes CHIAPPINELLI||ITA||8:46.82 Q||PB|
|5||107||Ali MESSAOUDI||ALG||8:46.95 Q|
|6||703||Patrick KARL||GER||8:47.20 q||PB|
|7||1556||Bailey ROTH||USA||8:48.60 q||PB|
|8||1013||Alberts BLAJS||LAT||8:52.47 q||PB|
|9||328||Ben PREISNER||CAN||8:53.14 q||PB|
|10||942||Kazuya SHIOJIRI||JPN||8:54.95 q|
The #2 runner on the 2014 junior list at 8:22, Titus Kibiego of Kenya qualified comfortably and won Heat 2.
|1||971||Titus Kipruto KIBIEGO||KEN||8:49.95 Q|
|2||1039||Soufiane ELBAKKALI||MAR||8:50.19 Q|
|3||555||Hailemariyam AMARE||ETH||8:54.92 Q||PB|
|4||1264||Tumisang MONNATLALA||RSA||8:56.51 Q|
|5||603||Mehdi BELHADJ||FRA||8:58.87 Q|
The men’s steeple final will be held at 6:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.